Love and Romance

It's Valentine’s Day, now is the perfect time to read the latest on love, relationships, and romance! Check out these new titles available at the Mercer County Library System:

Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships
By Susan M. Johnson
The bestselling author of Hold Me Tight presents a revolutionary new understanding of why and how we love. Every day we hear of relationships failing and questions of whether humans are meant to be monogamous. Love Sense presents new scientific evidence that tells us that humans "are" meant to mate for life. Dr. Johnson explains that romantic love is an attachment bond, just like that between mother and child, and shows us how to develop our "love sense"--our ability to develop long-lasting relationships. Love is not the least bit illogical or random, but actually an ordered and wise recipe for survival. Love Sense covers the three stages of a relationship and how to best weather them; the intelligence of emotions and the logic of love; the physical and psychological benefits of secure love; and much more. Based on groundbreaking research, Love Sense will change the way we think about love.

The Science of Happily Ever After: What Really Matters in the Quest for Enduring Love
By Ty Tashiro
“While on the surface, science and love seem to have absolutely nothing to do with one other, Tashiro, a relationship expert for Discovery's Fit and Healthy Channel, considers how employing scientific principles in a search for a mate could yield success. Tashiro tosses out three provocative questions: What does `happily ever after' really mean, and why do only three in ten people find it? Why do we only get three wishes for an ideal partner, and why do most people wish for the wrong things? What three traits should you look for in a partner if you want to improve significantly the odds of finding enduring love? After explaining the evolutionary reasons why one is predisposed to wish for attractive, healthy mates, Tashiro emphasizes the importance of choosing the right three wishes in attracting an ideal partner. He examines potential pitfalls, like holding out for an unreasonable ideal mate, teaches readers to examine their desires and analyze existing relationships for future happiness, and spot potential red flags in seemingly sound pairings. Complete with exercises, quizzes, sound advice, and a practical yet supportive tone, Tashiro offers the closest thing to a roadmap for ‘happily-ever-after.’” – Publishers Weekly

 “This engaging and thought-provoking book is highly recommended for readers seeking to learn more about romantic relationship dynamics and is especially ideal for singles.”— Library Journal

Lovebirds: Discover Your Love Type--One of 8 Birds--and the Secrets to Living with the One You Love
By Trevor Silvester
How can two people who love each other not get along? Most relationships founder not from a lack of love, but from a lack of understanding. In Lovebirds, couples therapist and birdwatcher Trevor Silvester shows how birds of a different feather can flock together. The quizzes in Lovebirds reveal which of eight birds you are, and which your partner is. Are you a ground bird or a sky bird? A sight bird or a song bird? If you are an owl, and you spend a lot of time talking to yourself, then how do you get along with a nightingale, one of the great song birds, which directs most of its talking outward? If you are a swan, and you prefer to stay on the ground, knowing things up close and in detail, then what kind of future do you have with a swift, which trusts its instincts over logic and can live happily in the clouds? Whimsical and wise, and with charming illustrations, Lovebirds puts a whole new spin on the relationship book.

“Couples therapist Silvester explores romantic relationships and personalities through a bird analogy. A series of quizzes divide people into two categories—sky birds, which are ruled by their intuition and feelings, and more rationalist, data-driven ground birds. Silvester further sorts readers into eight subcategories loosely based on the Myers Briggs Personality Inventory: sight, song, feeling, and thinking birds. After types are established, he explores relationship dynamics between each personality type, addressing what each "bird" needs to know to interact with another type, and dos and don'ts for respective combinations. Once the myriad possibilities are explained in detail, Silvester offers love advice geared to all personality types—such as how to maintain a relationship once the newness has worn off—and encourages all couples to set specific, measurable, achievable, realistic goals to maintain their level of satisfaction within a romantic relationship. One of Silvester's most striking and useful pieces of advice applies to everyone reading the book: `Make sure the internal self-talk is positive. Male or female, think about how you want something to be, not how it isn't.’ Despite the cute tone and occasional juvenile asides, Silvester offers a solid manual for strong relationships.”—Publishers Weekly

Romance is My Day Job: A Memoir of Finding Love at Last
By Patience Bloom
Who knows the ins and outs of romance better than a Harlequin editor? A surprising and exhilarating look into Patience Bloom's unexpected real-life love story.  At some point, we have all wished romance could be more like fiction. Patience Bloom certainly did, many times over. As a teen she fell in love with Harlequin novels and imagined her life would turn out just like the heroines' on the page: That shy guy she had a crush on would not just take her out-he would sweep her off her feet with witty banter, quiet charm, and a secret life as a rock star. Not exactly her reality, but Bloom kept reading books that fed her reveries.  Years later she moved to New York and found her dream job, editing romances for Harlequin. Every day, her romantic fantasies came true—on paper. Bloom became an expert when it came to fictional love stories, editing amazing books and learning everything she could about the romance business. But her dating life remained uninspired. She nearly gave up on love.  Then one day a real-life chance at romance made her wonder if what she had been writing and editing all those years might be true. A Facebook message from a high school friend, Sam, sparked a relationship with more promise than she had had in years. But Sam lived thousands of miles away-they hadn't seen each other in more than twenty years. Was it worth the risk? Finally, Bloom learned: Love and romance can conquer all.

The Glass Slipper: Women and Love Stories
By Susan Ostrov Weisser
Why is the story of romance in books, magazines, and films still aimed at women rather than at men? Even after decades of feminism, traditional ideas and messages about romantic love still hold sway and, in our "postfeminist" age, are more popular than ever. Increasingly, we have become a culture of romance: stories of all kinds shape the terms of love. Women, in particular, love a love story. "The Glass Slipper" is about the persistence of a familiar Anglo-American love story into the digital age. Comparing influential classics to their current counterparts, Susan Ostrov Weisser relates in highly amusing prose how these stories are shaped and defined by and for women, the main consumers of romantic texts. Following a trajectory that begins with Jane Austen and concludes with Internet dating sites, Weisser shows the many ways in which nineteenth-century views of women's nature and the Victorian idea of romance have survived the feminist critique of the 1970s and continue in new and more ambiguous forms in today's media, with profound implications.  More than a book about romance in fiction and media, The Glass Slipper illustrates how traditional stories about women's sexuality, femininity, and romantic love have survived as seemingly protective elements in a more modern, feminist, sexually open society, confusing the picture for women themselves. Weisser compares diverse narratives--historical and contemporary from high literature and "low" genres--discussing novels by Jane Austen and Charlotte Bronte, Victorian women's magazines, and D. H. Lawrence's "Lady Chatterley's Lover"; Disney movies; popular Harlequin romance novels; masochistic love in films; pornography and its relationship to romance; and reality TV and Internet ads as romantic stories. Ultimately, Weisser shows that the narrative versions of the Glass Slipper should be taken as seriously as the Glass Ceiling as we see how these representations of romantic love are meant to inform women's beliefs and goals. In this book, Weisser's goal is not to shatter the Glass Slipper, but to see through it.

“This is a decidedly scholarly work with substantial notes and an extensive select bibliography, yet it is not out of reach for the layperson and those interested in the impact of D.H. Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover on the most recent season of “The Bachelorette” and how both have affected women's views of themselves, both in and out of love.”—Library Journal

Love Him or Leave Him, But Don’t Get Stuck with the Tab
By Loni Love
That's the message of this fresh and funny relationship book by beloved actress-comedian Loni Love. Full of down-to-earth advice on love, sex, and dating, Loni delivers answers to women's most pressing relationship questions along with plenty of hilarious been-there-done-that tales--from hooking up to breaking up to everything in between. As Loni says, "You can love him or you can leave him, but the day a man starts taking advantage of you is when you need to remember that putting yourself first is the most important step in finding love. That's the foundation for all the advice I give, because it's a message so many women need to hear, over and over, like multiple orgasms." Sure you can act like a lady and think like a man, or admit that he's just not that into you, but the path to lasting love is looking out for number one and treating yourself like the great catch you are. If you are in a great relationship, Loni gives tips on keeping it strong. (Love him.) If you are having problems that seem insurmountable, she tells you how to extricate yourself from difficult situations. (Leave him.) But no matter what, do not let yourself get bullied, cheated on, or taken advantage of (aka Stuck with the Tab). Every woman deserves a healthy, satisfying, exciting love life, so what are you waiting for? Loni Love has all the answers.

“Love's advice is witty and wise, and there's something for readers at every stage in their love lives.”—Publishers Weekly

Love 2.0: How Our Supreme Emotion Affects Everything We Feel, Think, Do, and Become
By Barbara Frederickson
We all know love matters but, in this groundbreaking book, positive emotions expert Barbara L. Fredrickson shows us just how much by giving us an entirely new way of understanding and appreciating it. More than happiness and even optimism, love holds the key to improving our mental and physical health as well as lengthening our lives and deepening our personal experience. Using research from her own lab, Fredrickson redefines love not as a stable behemoth, but as micro-moments of connection between people--even strangers. She demonstrates that our capacity for experiencing love can be measured and strengthened in ways that improve our health and longevity. Finally, she introduces us to informal and formal practices to unlock love in our lives, generate compassion, and even self-soothe. Rare in its scope and ambitious in its message, Love 2.0 will reinvent how you look at and experience our most powerful emotion.

Swoon: Great Seducers and Why Women Love Them
By Elizabeth Stevens Prioleau

Contrary to popular myth and dogma, the men who consistently beguile women belie the familiar stereotypes: satanic rake, alpha stud, slick player, Mr. Nice, or big-money mogul. As the author points out in this surprising, insightful study, legendary ladies' men are a different, complex species altogether, often without looks or money. They fit no known template and possess a cache of powerful erotic secrets. With wit and erudition, Prioleau cuts through the cultural lore and reveals who these master lovers really are and the arts they practice to ensnare women. What she discovers is revolutionary. Using evidence from science, popular culture, fiction, anthropology, and history, and from interviews with colorful real-world ladykillers, Prioleau finds that great seducers share a constellation of unusual traits. While these men run the gamut, they radiate joie de vivre, intensity, and sex appeal; above all, they adore women. They listen, praise, amuse, and delight, and they know their way around the bedroom. They have finessed the hardest part: locking in and revving desire. Women never tire of these fascinators and often, like Casanova's conquests, remain besotted for life. Finally, Prioleau takes stock of the contemporary culture and asks: where are the Casanovas of today? After a critique of the twenty-first-century sexual malaise-the gulf between the sexes and women's record discontent-she compellingly argues that society needs ladies' men more than ever. Groundbreaking and provocative, Swoon is underpinned with sharp analysis, brilliant research, and served up with seductive verve.

“A frank, fascinating look at the characteristics of historical and contemporary seducers. Lovers of social and cultural history, as well as the merely romantically curious, will enjoy it.”—Library Journal

- Lisa S.

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